The decision of the Stockholm Arbitration Court on the dispute between Naftogaz of Ukraine and Gazprom is "a historic victory", said Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, according to the Presidential press service. The outcome of the trial is of "the utmost importance" with regard to the country's national security, the president said. "If there had been a loss in this court, Ukraine would face a direct threat of default," Poroshenko stressed during a meeting with the head of Naftogaz, Andriy Kobolev.
The head of Naftogaz, in turn, called the verdict of the court "a positive decision on all counts." "The price [of the gas] was overstated, [and] the contract was non-market; it was signed on crippling terms. And the tribunal has now actually confirmed this for the second time," he explained.
Poroshenko congratulated the company, the government and the "whole people of Ukraine" on the fact that Ukraine has learned to defend its interests by using European courts".
Naftogaz and Gazprom announced that the Court had arrived at a decision on the dispute between the companies, which has lasted since 2015, on Friday, December 22. Gazprom and Naftogaz said that majority of their respective requirements had been met. The Russian side stressed that Naftogaz will be forced to pay $2 billion in arrears plus interest on the arrears since December 22, as well as collect and pay for 5 billion cubic meters of gas starting next year.
Naftogaz also said that the arbitration "completely cancelled Gazprom’s 'take or pay' provision for $56 billion over 2009-2017." Additionally, the court reduced the volume of mandatory annual purchases in the future. The company announced a "positive effect" of the verdict "in the amount of more than $75 billion."
The Ukrainian company also reported later on that, according to the court's decision, it is not obliged to pay for gas supplies to the DPR or LPR "for any person other than Naftogaz." "In short: those whom Gazprom supplied with gas in [some districts of Donetsk and Luhansk regions], [Gazprom] must let [them] pay," stressed Naftogaz.